Need some advice on traveling with my pistols...asking the experts!

This is a discussion on Need some advice on traveling with my pistols...asking the experts! within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Originally Posted by MadMac This step got me in trouble as I was flying Delta via Detroit Metro. I had been to Utah, and was ...

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  1. #16
    Senior Member Array bbqgrill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadMac View Post
    This step got me in trouble as I was flying Delta via Detroit Metro. I had been to Utah, and was going to NC. I was met at the connecting gate by two uniformed Detroit city cops. They said I had not declared my firearm because they couldn't find the orange tag inside my luggage. They took me to the TSA supervisor who politely asked me for the key for my COM gun safe that was inside my bag. I complied. While waiting for him to rifle my luggage, I showed my CHP to the two Detroit cops. They looked at the TSA supervisor, and told him I was "OK" as I had a CHP. They then walked away from me, and the TSA Supervisor cae back with my orange tag telling me next time to keep it OUTSIDE the gun case. After that little tidbit, he asked my how much my Kimber CDP had cost me, and wanted to know if I wanted to trade straight-up for his Glock. I politely declined his offer, and we shared a laugh.

    Since that time, I always ask for the "official" airline tape (all gate agents have a roll in their desk), and tape the orange tag to the top of my gun safe.

    I haven't had a problem since. YMMV. This was my experience.
    Really, they re-screened your luggage, I never knew that was part of the procedure; I have watched luggage (not mine) move directly from one aiplane to another. My declaration tag has always been placed inside my firearm case.
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  3. #17
    Ex Member Array MadMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbqgrill View Post
    Really, they re-screened your luggage, I never knew that was part of the procedure; I have watched luggage (not mine) move directly from one aiplane to another. My declaration tag has always been placed inside my firearm case.
    Yup, my luggage was rescreened at DTW on this trip. It doesn't happen everywhere, nor on every flight.

    I know what all the rules say, but think about it. Putting the declaration tag inside your locked firearms case (for which only YOU should have the key), is senseless. There's no way any TSA agent or luggage handler can tell you declared it while the gun is enroute. Taping it to the outside of the firearms case makes the most sense. Plus, the "official" airline tape makes it look "official" to all the thieving, badge-wearing creeps employed in the bowels of our airports.

  4. #18
    Member Array sureshot1's Avatar
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    As for me, I would drive, as it allows me to see other parts of our country. Also then I don't have to take off my shoes, or have my DEPENDS checked for a bomb by some clown working for the TSA.
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  5. #19
    Ex Member Array MadMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sureshot1 View Post
    As for me, I would drive, as it allows me to see other parts of our country. Also then I don't have to take off my shoes, or have my DEPENDS checked for a bomb by some clown working for the TSA.
    I'm happy this works for you. As for me, this makes it a bit difficult to get to Asia and Europe.

  6. #20
    Senior Member Array BkCo1's Avatar
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    Mad Mac, I have had similar problems with the unloaded card. I have done what the ticket agent says and still have been called on it. I agree it should be outside of the gun case. Makes one wonder doesn't it?
    Semper Fi

  7. #21
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    Of course, putting it on the outside of the safe opens you up to some jerk wanting to mess with you. He steals the tag then how do you prove you went through the procedure properly. You can probably get there, but it sure would be a mess. I would take a photo of the tag in my safe then shut and lock the safe and have the photo to show the cops if they inquire. You may still have to walk to your bag, but then again, you may not.
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  8. #22
    Ex Member Array MadMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BkCo1 View Post
    Mad Mac, I have had similar problems with the unloaded card. I have done what the ticket agent says and still have been called on it. I agree it should be outside of the gun case. Makes one wonder doesn't it?
    Semper Fi
    Agreed. Since I started doing this little trick, I haven't had a problem. I know the rules can seem confusing, but sticking that card inside your locked gun case makes absolutely no sense. No one but you should be able to unlock your gun case inside your checked bag. Ask your ticket agent for some of his/her sealing tape, and tape the tag to the outside of the gun case. I simply tell the agent I travel all the time with one, and I know the rules and the laws. I say it politely, but firmly, and although some agents have questioned my decision, none have ever stopped me from doing it.

    I don't want to miss a connection again because I have to have an interview with the local LEOs and the TSA.

    Also, I never actually use the word "gun" while having a discussion with an agent as people can get hinky if they overhear. I tell the agent sotto voce I am traveling with an UNLOADED firearm. I once had some nosy kid at the check-in counter get an eyeful of my Glock. The look on his face was priceless as he started tugging on his dad's shirt tail while staring like a carp as I demonstrated the gun was unloaded.

  9. #23
    Ex Member Array MadMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ksholder View Post
    Of course, putting it on the outside of the safe opens you up to some jerk wanting to mess with you. He steals the tag then how do you prove you went through the procedure properly. You can probably get there, but it sure would be a mess. I would take a photo of the tag in my safe then shut and lock the safe and have the photo to show the cops if they inquire. You may still have to walk to your bag, but then again, you may not.
    If some feckless TSA boob or ramp-rat baggage handler wants to rip open my checked bag and try to rip off the tag, I guesss I'll risk it. At that point, the only thing for them to do is to try to rip out the gun safe (that is cabled to the frame of my checked bag.) What advantage is it to them? There are tape marks already all over my gun safe. If they steal my gun safe out of my checked bag, I will wager their upper managerment will seek out the miscreant a lot more dilligently than they did for the TSA clown who stole my cufflinks.

  10. #24
    Senior Member Array rljohns's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadMac View Post
    This step got me in trouble as I was flying Delta via Detroit Metro. I had been to Utah, and was going to NC. I was met at the connecting gate by two uniformed Detroit city cops. They said I had not declared my firearm because they couldn't find the orange tag inside my luggage. They took me to the TSA supervisor who politely asked me for the key for my COM gun safe that was inside my bag. I complied. While waiting for him to rifle my luggage, I showed my CHP to the two Detroit cops. They looked at the TSA supervisor, and told him I was "OK" as I had a CHP. They then walked away from me, and the TSA Supervisor cae back with my orange tag telling me next time to keep it OUTSIDE the gun case. After that little tidbit, he asked my how much my Kimber CDP had cost me, and wanted to know if I wanted to trade straight-up for his Glock. I politely declined his offer, and we shared a laugh.

    Since that time, I always ask for the "official" airline tape (all gate agents have a roll in their desk), and tape the orange tag to the top of my gun safe.

    I haven't had a problem since. YMMV. This was my experience.
    This seems to be a late change. I just flew Frontier fron Denver to Dayton, OH and started to put it in the case and the ticket agent stopped me. She said they changed the procedure. I think they got tired of opening the COM boxes. I also had to stand in line at the CTX for TSA to x-ray the bag. Everyone is flying with arms it seemed. They also seem to care more about the ammo than the firearm these days.

  11. #25
    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadMac View Post
    Also, I never actually use the word "gun" while having a discussion with an agent as people can get hinky if they overhear. I tell the agent sotto voce I am traveling with an UNLOADED firearm. I once had some nosy kid at the check-in counter get an eyeful of my Glock. The look on his face was priceless as he started tugging on his dad's shirt tail while staring like a carp as I demonstrated the gun was unloaded.
    +1

    I have asked Port Authority do you want move my suitcase to the around so not to scare the sheep? Yea, good call. The one PA officer who busted my chops took the gun out of the case and was walking around with it while on the phone with NC Pistol licensing. I had a gun lock up the mag well and out the ejection port but he was not even thinking as we was walking around in his own world.

  12. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by HKinNY View Post
    I have a Nassau County (Long Island) Pistol lecense and have flown out 6 times thru JFK that I can remember off the top of my head. I also carry my Congressman Young letter as well as Airline reg and TSA rules and follow the law without any problems. http://www.nraila.org/images/DOJltrTSA.pdf Most of the Port Authority officers have been great guys except one PA officer who would not listen and did not care. He got bad info to make things worse from an unknowledgeable person from Nassau County Pistol licensing. Still flew with firearm that trip. I even had one officer say. This letter would be a great defense to an arrest and the charges would likely be dropped but I see you are legit so have a great trip.
    nice story but the fact remains that unless you have a NY permit it isn't advisable to travel through a NY airport with a gun

  13. #27
    Ex Member Array MadMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by apvbguy View Post
    nice story but the fact remains that unless you have a NY permit it isn't advisable to travel through a NY airport with a gun
    +1

    It may be OK if you have NYS permit, and some friends in the PA, but I'm just a poor, dumb cracker from down south with a southern state CHP. If I have to fly through or to JFK, EWR, LGA, MDW, ORD, and anyplace in CA or overseas, my guns wait patiently for me at home. It's not worth jail time.
    BkCo1 likes this.

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